Columnist threatened over controversial piece on Cory Monteith death
CTV British Columbia
Published Saturday, July 20, 2013 6:50PM PDT
Last Updated Saturday, July 20, 2013 7:04PM PDT
A columnist for the Calgary Herald is receiving death threats after a recent column she wrote on Cory Monteith’s death ignited controversy, but she’s sticking by her position.
Licia Corbella’s July 19 article suggested Monteith might be alive today if it weren’t for what she considers Vancouver's permissive drug culture, including the Insite injection site, which gives addicts a safe place to take heroin. The ‘Glee’ star died in a downtown Vancouver hotel on July 13 from a mix of alcohol and heroin.
"There's a real culture of acceptance and enabling in the drug culture in Vancouver that doesn't exist in other cities,” said Corbella. ”You do not see open drug use, for instance, on the streets of Calgary or Montreal or Toronto. You just don't."
Corbella has lived in Vancouver and still visits the city often.
Since the article was published, she's received “very angry” emails and tweets from “people who hope I die of a heroin overdose, people who hope that I die a long and painful death, people who want to mete out street justice to me," she said.
But Insite’s Mark Townsend called Corbella’s article misleading and said had Monteith gone to Insite, he would be alive today.
"Clearly, had he gone to Insite, he wouldn't have died. A million people have gone thorugh Insite and no one has died," said Townsend.
Insite has been in operation for ten years and has had no deaths at the facility, which is used by 800 people each day.
Studies have shown offering addicts a safe, medically-supervised place to shoot-up makes it more likely those addicted to heroin will get treatment due to regular contact with health professionals.
With a report by CTV British Columbia’s Penny Daflos